Thursday, July 18, 2013

Courtright Resevoir

      Now that I am done with high school, I recently got a job at an auto-parts warehouse in Southern Fresno named Metro. I work morning shifts from 7:00 to 1:30 and have so far enjoyed the work and the people whom I work with. Now, this doesn't mean the first couple weeks weren't exhausting. I usually came home fighting off sleep the entire day so I could get to bed at a time sufficient to wake up at 4:50 and get the bus by 6:00. The combination of this and dating somebody new has thrown my schedule off balance, so please excuse any irregularities for the next x amount of time on this blog.

Before all this happened in the days of my freedom, I was at Courtright Resevoir with my family for a night of the outdoors. We were driving around looking for a place to camp when certain family members wanted to stay at a public camping ground. Others in the family weren't too impressed with this location or the neighbors, but we/they put our/their selves aside and planned for a pleasant evening. This actually turned out great for Beetles because I found a nice series of a Sierra Nevada endemic Tiger Beetle; Omus laevis.

   Omus laevis LeConte, 1866

 This was the highlight for me, but there were many other great findings:

Top: Ceruchus punctatus LeConte, 1869
Bottom: Ponderosa Pine log micro habitat.

Top: Anatis rathvoni (LeConte, 1852)
Bottom: Courtright Resevoir, habitat.

Calopus angustus
LeConte 1851
(Coleoptera: Oedemeridae)

 Selatosomus sp.

Selatosomus sp.

 This one I had foolishly mistaken for a Cantharid, so I didn't collect it. But after a longer look at the picture I realized it is really a member of the genus Asclera; another species from the family Oedemeridae I found on this trip.

Tuesday, July 2, 2013

Vicente Flat 3.) The Hike Back

      After we filled up on Oatmeal, we started for the journey back out of the canyon and to the truck. It was good exercise trekking two miles back up hill to say the least; in fact, Michael ended up carrying his 20 pound dog Lulu most of the way.

Once we were out of the canyon and on the trail we took a short rest and we were on our slightly downhill trail all the way back to the truck. Here are some of the rest of the bugs we saw:

Unknown Fly (Robber Fly?) I submitted this one to Bugguide in hopes of getting down to the genus.

Nemognatha scutellaris (LeConte) (Coleoptera: Meloidae)

Bombus bifarius Cresson (Hymenoptera: Apidae)

As we were driving home, Michael noticed a tick in the back of my arm. Because of the inconvenient spot, I asked Sam to photograph it before he would kindly yank it out.

Sneaky little devil

This was not the only surprise; a couple days after the trip my left arm started breaking out in hives. Turns out I must have brushed through the notorious poison oak when beating for leaf beetles and night collecting for ground-dwellers. Oh well, the hives are gone now and the tick bite has almost healed.

Poison Oak (Toxicodendron diversilobum)

In just a couple hours I will be hiking the high Sierra Nevada. It will take until Saturday to complete this hike so I am hoping to get some good photographs for good future blogging. Wish me luck!